Alternative title: New Instructor, New Moves, Same Ole Ruebi? … Judging by the amount of times I’ve shrieked “I have a flapjack wedgie” and “well, I don’t need to shave there anytime soon” I can safely say that yes, I’m the same ole Ruebi … And yes, front wedgies are as painful as they sound!
My hands are blistering, my thighs are burning and I feel dizzy from the spins but the anger I felt pre-class has dissipated and what remains is a mixture of contentment and respect. Pole Dancing isn’t just a sport for me, it’s part of my therapy – It pushes me outside of my comfort zone in a manner that gives me control over the Anxiety and Depression, it allows me to vent frustration/anger in positive ways, it shows me how strong my body and mind are and it allows me to interact with an amazing group of supportive and body positive women.
I spend the majority of my time around women who are obsessed with diets and body image, it is a breeding ground of negativity and hate with untold damage being done and pressure being voiced in snide comments and remarks. While part of me acknowledges that it is probably transference of their own self loathing, the other part of me is frustrated that body image is a topic that can seem all consuming and ultimately is used as leverage against each other. My own battle with body image is documented on here but is also evidenced outside of my blog by the fact I’m due to attend Cognitive Behavioural Therapy to undo a lot of the damage that has been caused with the very warped view I have regarding my appearance (recognising it as warped has taken a LOT of therapy already), this is something I don’t hide from people … And even with this in mind (they have full knowledge of my Mental Health and ongoing therapy), I have found myself the target of their negativity on a frequent basis.
So, how do I deal with their negativity? Well, I either throw them off course with a compliment (which works surprisingly well), call them out on their bullshit (which doesn’t work as well) or I put on some short shorts (usually showing off my gorgeously hairy legs), I battle with a sports bra (EVIL!) and I fling myself at a metal pole while trying my best not to break my nose (though I did give myself a black eye at my last class).
I spend my exercise classes with women of all shapes and sizes, all of us supporting one another not only with the routines we’re trying to master but with life outside of the studio, we admire each others strengths, we face our weaknesses together, we laugh together, we compliment each other, we cheer our successes … It is an amazing and empowering environment to be in.
Without them … I wouldn’t dare to have attempted these:
Yup … No crash mat!
I have a bit of a fear of headstands (don’t ask me why because I have no idea!):
To quote Martin Luther King, Jr – “Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that”.
Be kind to yourselves, be kind to each other, because we are all beautiful wonderful beings!
PS – It’s the big Burnley v Blackburn derby this weekend and this little Claret is a total bag of nerves!
**EDIT – Burnley 1 – 0 Blackburn! Woop woop! Andre Gray scored our winner … I’m insisting that the good luck came from George Boyd‘s man bun (I don’t usually like man buns but I’ll make an exception for George!)**